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Does a medicines information service have a positive impact on patient care?

Aim: To assess the usefulness of a medicines information service in terms of impact on patient care

by Diane Bramley, Champa Mohandas, Satpal Soor, David Erskine and C. Alice Oborne



To assess the usefulness of a medicines information service in terms of impact on patient care.


Telephone survey.

Subjects and setting

Healthcare professionals submitting questions to two NHS departments at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, London.

Outcome measures

Number of queries submitted where enquirers were waiting on answers from MI before they could proceed with the patient’s care.

Number of queries where the enquirer used the information or followed the advice provided by MI.

Number of queries where information or advice from MI influenced a change in the patient’s management.

Type of actions taken by enquirers as a result of the information or advice from MI.

Numbers of patients whose clinical outcome was different to that expected at the time of enquiry.


40 enquiries met the inclusion criteria for the study, of which 32 were followed up. 80% of enquirers were waiting for advice from MI before proceeding and another 12.5 % were already managing their patients but required confirmation of their actions.

The information  and advice provided by MI was accepted and used by enquirers in 94% of the sample followed up.


MI services have a positive impact on patient care.


Diane Bramley, MRPharmS, is senior pharmacist medicines information

Champa Mohandas, MRPharmS, is a pharmacist

Satpal Soor, MRPharmS, is principal pharmacist, medicines information

David Erskine, MSc, MRPharmS, is director of the London and South East Medicines Information Service

Alice Oborne, PhD, MRPharmS,is principal pharmacist, medicines use research at the department of pharmacy

All at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, London

Correspondence to:
Diane Bramley
Department of Pharmacy, St Thomas’ Hospital
Lambeth Palace Road, London SE1 7EH
(tel 020 7188 5018, e-mail

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 10048603

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